Deborah Simpier |

Althea Blockchain Update

We want to begin by sincerely thanking all our validators and community members who have supported our project through many months!

TL;DR

  • In 2019, we successfully completed the testing of our custom transaction library and Althea testnets 1-4.
  • In late 2019, we began work on the design and evaluation of the "Peggy" ethereum-to-cosmos bridge.
  • In early 2020, we arrived at an improved Peggy design that meets all of our needs. However that is when COVID-19 hit.
  • Since COVID-19, the demand for new Althea networks has greatly increased. All our efforts have been directed there, causing some delays in our blockchain development.
  • We have recently started strategic development of Peggy and reached out to Cosmos stakeholders and the Interchain foundation to support a more general purpose bridge that would benefit everyone. We welcome feedback on our proposal.

After the success of testnet chains altheazone1-4, we believed everyone had a good grasp of how to start and manage the Cosmos chain itself. We also performed testing on the transaction generation library deep_space that we will use on our routers.

While we have been quiet on the updates, we have not neglected the building and growth of our core user base - people who want faster, affordable internet! In fact, in our Oregon market we have grown by 45% since COVID-19, and have launched several new networks.

We expect to continue to grow rapidly as the need for affordable broadband in a post-COVID world is paramount. By incentivizing private property owners, Althea networks can be built faster and more affordably than legacy ISPs.

Althea relay at a farm that gets automatically compensated for hosting antennas that relay signal to neighbors.
In a decentralized network, individuals make up the infrastructure of the network, like this relay on a hill.

The core functionality of Althea is pay-per-forward - people get paid automatically for hosting antennas and forwarding bandwidth to their neighbors. Currently, Althea users load their routers by purchasing Ethereum with an embedded Wyre widget and a bridge converts this to stable Xdai using Uniswap.  

While this has been working for now, to continue scaling we are building an Althea blockchain using CosmosSDK. We also need a bridge from a currency with liquidity, like Ethereum, to tokens on the Althea blockchain. For our Cosmos chain this will be Peggy - an unfinished module used by a Cosmos blockchain to bridge Ethereum assets to CosmosSDK based chains.

New network in Westport, Oregon.
The network in Abuja, Nigeria which supports hundreds of mobile users.

In 2019, we launched our first test nets of the Althea blockchain with a great group of validators who helped us with deployments. At this time, we were hopeful that the Peggy module would be ready for testing and deploying our Althea blockchain in production.

In late 2019 it became apparent that Peggy was not at or near that stage and we began planning for the Althea team to complete and optimize its development.

Over the last several months, we have reached out to Cosmos stakeholders and members of the community to begin work on funding and planning the Peggy development with additional DeFi functionality.

We are excited to share with you our preliminary Cosmos Hub grant proposal and the initial planning for integrating Peggy with the Althea blockchain. We invite comments and feedback here - https://docs.google.com/document/d/17mjvH06pZglL2PkJ013xNzFjEESqHtk3nYZ66aTR9YU/edit?usp=sharing

Our preliminary road map includes testnets in the summer and fall of 2020 with a goal to launch main net in late 2020. Becasue our users use Althea as their primary home internet connection we will take every precaution to ensure all aspects of the blockchain and bridge are properly tested.

While our core focus is to support and grow our user base, we have started working on the Ethereum side of the Peggy bridge. We expect to accelerate this development and expand its scope to include more general purpose features when additional funding becomes available. We invite validators who wish to be involved with any Althea testnets to join the Althea validator channel in Discord.

Thank you all for your patience as we work towards more frequent communication. We look forward to growing the interoperable and decentralized internet with you!


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